East Ayrshire Council (EAC) will seek a solution from Transport Scotland and the Scottish Government to upgrade the Bellfield interchange, according to a council report.

EAC has been unsuccessful on two occasions to securing cash from the UK Government’s Levelling Up Fund (LUF).

The first two rounds of the fund have seen £3.8billion awarded to over 200 projects across the UK.

The third round of the fund will provide a further £1billion of direct investment in communities across Britain.

EAC has been unsuccessful in securing money from the second and third round of the funding.

However, according to a council report, bosses will continue to seek a solution for the "vital" upgrade.

Upgrading plans for the interchange include:

  • Introducing signalling on five of the entry roads.
  • A segregated left turn from the A735 Queen’s Drive to the A77 (N)
  • Widening of the circulating carriageway to three lanes
  • Adding a third lane at the top of the A77 (N) entry arm
  • Extension of the A77 (N) slip road and the upgrade of this offslip to a parallel diverge
  • The construction of an active travel footbridge

 The original cost estimate to upgrade Bellfield at the time of application was £10.5million.

However, it's believed that cost has risen to around £14-15million.

East Ayrshire Council says that the interchange remains "a Transport Scotland asset with no Council ownership".

A report adds: "As the interchange forms part of the strategic road network, responsibility for the junction lies with Transport Scotland.

"Transport Scotland have indicated for a number of years that they expect the Council to fund upgrades to the Interchange and they have not prioritised Bellfield in STPR2 which sets out infrastructure commitments to 2042.

"It is clear that following the unsuccessful bid to the Levelling Up Fund, some additional alternative sources of funding will need to be explored.

"The council remains determined and resolute that the works at Bellfield must proceed, and will seek an early meeting with our key stakeholders (including Scottish Government and Transport Scotland) in order to agree upon a way forward.

"Notwithstanding, the Interchange is not the council’s asset, and the council is clear that Transport Scotland must take some financial responsibility for improvements to the Interchange which is one of their assets."